For pitchers, it really is that simple!
We spend hour upon hour working on becoming the best pitcher we can. We learn all the pitches, we perfect our mechanics and we work really hard to increase our velocity. We spend a ton of money on lessons and we have enough dents in the garage door to demonstrate just how committed we are to becoming the best pitcher we can become.
Then we go out on game day and something happens. Now, why a pitcher who works so hard on her craft can struggle so much in games can be traced to a lot of different explanations, but the one that rings true the most often and with the greatest consistency is not throwing enough strikes or a strike at the right time.
Pitchers who attack the zone are much more successful, period. A pitcher who can throw a first-pitch strike, when many hitters are less prepared, are going to win the battle at a very high rate. Pitchers who pitch ahead in the count are going to dominate hitters.
Watching a pitcher who is constantly behind in the count is the most painful thing anyone can see in this game. A pitcher who is consistently behind in the count has to work much harder. When a pitcher gets behind the hitter, they’re often forced to throw a pitch that’s much easier to heat, when a hitter is really ready to hit, than when they are head.
Pitchers, you have a simple goal. Get ahead and stay ahead! If you throw strikes, you put the pressure on the hitter and take the pressure off of yourself. Wouldn’t that be a whole lot more fun!